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Suits renewed for Season 8 without Patrick J. Adams and Meghan Markle

Suits. Photo by Nigel Parry/USA Network

Story by Jack Foley

LEGAL drama Suits will return for an eighth season – but without two of its leading players, Patrick J. Adams and Meghan Markle.

Both actors will depart the series at the end of its seventh season, the second half of which is due to kick off in the US at the end of March.

However, series creator Aaron Korsh is set to return for the eighth season with stars Gabriel Macht, Sarah Rafferty, Rick Hoffman and new series regular Dulé Hill.

Announcing the renewal, Chris McCumber, president, entertainment networks, NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment, said: “After seven seasons, Suits remains one of USA Network’s most beloved and popular series.

“While we’re excited for Season 8, everyone at USA will deeply miss Patrick and Meghan, and are grateful for the talent and commitment they brought to Suits season after season. We wish each of them nothing but the very best.”

Commenting on the departure of two of the show’s leading lights, series creator Aaron Korsh said: “I would like to thank Patrick and Meghan for their extraordinary contributions over the last seven years. Not only have they been outstanding in their roles as Mike and Rachel, they are also superb human beings who will always be beloved members of the Suits family, and we wish them well in their days to come.

“Speaking of days to come, I am incredibly excited to welcome back our phenomenal crew and cast – Gabriel, Sarah, Rick and Dulé – who will continue the roller coaster ride with all of our amazing fans. Season 8 will have everything from shifting alliances and internal power plays, to secrets, betrayals and fiery relationships. Keep an eye out for an adversarial new character that will give Harvey a run for his money.”

While Markle’s reason to depart the show is obvious (she became engaged to Britain’s Prince Harry in November last year, with the two planning to marry in May), Adams was a little more surprising.

But in a statement issued this week, Adams explained his decision for leaving.

He said: “It’s hard for me to imagine what words, in what order would sufficiently express my love and gratitude to all of the people who have made the last seven years possible. From my unbelievably talented cast mates to our relentlessly committed crew, to the brilliant minds at USA, UCP and Hypnotic, to the legions of fans all over the world, every one of them dedicating so much of their time, energy and talent to make Suits what it is today – one of the most beloved and successful shows on television.

“So, I will choose the simplest words I have. Thank you. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. It has been an honor working with and for each and everyone one of you.

“Mike Ross has taught me a lot about commitment, hard work and the power of believing in yourself and I feel blessed that now we both get to walk out into the lives that we never dreamed we would actually be lucky enough to live.

“I’m excited to now step across the screen and become solely a fan of a show that I know has much more in store in the years to come. I wish everyone involved the best and am excited to see what kind of trouble they’ll get themselves in and out of from here on out.”